Canadian Consulting Engineer

B.C. engineers vote on continuing professional development

August 5, 2015

This month professional engineers and geoscientists in British Columbia start voting on whether to accept a new bylaw on professional development. The Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of B.C. (APEGBC) is proposing shifting from a voluntary program to one where members have to undertake professional development and have to report their activities in order to maintain their licences in good standing.
E-mail notifications are going out and voting starts on August 26. It closes on October 2, 2015. The bylaw requires 66.67% support to pass.
The association spent five months consulting with its members over the proposals. More than 5,000 members participated in a survey and consultations were held around the province.
Based on the feedback the association made some significant changes.
It has reduced the overall number of professional development hours (PDHs) required from 80 to 50 per year (specifically 150 on a three-year rolling total).
It has also reduced the number of hours that a member can count in the professional practice category (i.e. hours carrying out your function as a practitioner). Instead of members being able to accumulate 50 hours per year based on professional practice, they can only count 20 hours per year. In an article in APEGBC’s Innovation magazine, the association said the reduction “responds to concerns from members who are semi-retired, underemployed, or working part-time.”
The association has also simplified the categories and will no longer require members to accrue hours in three out of six categories.
However, it now requires that 15 hours of professional development be objectively verified by a third party. These verified hours must be for activities such as attendance at seminars, volunteering, etc. Professional practice hours do not count as verifiable.
For more information, click here.
For an article in Canadian Consulting Engineer’s January-February 2015, “Keeping Up” on the debate around the country surrounding mandatory continuing education for engineers, page 30, click here.
here (text only)

Article revised August 6, 2015, 2.11 p.m. EST


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